Cake decorating is part of some bakers' professional skills. It can be the basis of a business run out of a home, or it can be a hobby.
Cakes are commonly decorated for special occasions, parties, events or to accompany a special meal. Some people enjoy decorating cakes as a creative outlet and way to make a meal or dessert feel like something out of the ordinary.
Cake designs vary from simple to complex. Some cakes are single layer cakes and others are multi-tiered cakes. Shaped cakes, also called cut up cakes or cut out cakes, are often easy to create and make a celebration unique. Complex, three-dimensional cakes are popular by many bakers. Some television shows show bakers competing to create complex, large, multi-tiered three dimensional cakes.
Decorations can vary from simple icing to amazing recreations of objects, like castles. Often, items from your local supermarket can be used to creatively decorate cakes. Like any skill, some people are better at it than others and can turn their ability into a way to make some extra money or even to earn a living.
While some decorations, like candles, are meant to be removed before eating, most cake decoration is edible. Frosting can be used to decorate. Another related hobby is making crystallized flowers.
- Marshmallow Fondant Recipe and Photo Tutorial by Peggy Weaver on What's Cooking America (Peggy Weaver's Baking Corner)
- dummies.com on Cake Decorating Ingredients You Need, also Cake Decorating for Dummies excerpt
- The Wilton company, which makes dessert decorating supplies, has classes and a Web site with information about how to use them: decorate a cake, cupcakes, cookies & candy
- Global Sugar Art, sells supplies, also has pictures and instruction sheets
- Cake Decorating Ideas
- American Cake Decorating newsletter
- CakeShapes Designs, sells downloadable cake patterns to create cut up cakes and gives tips for decorating cakes without expensive cake decorating pans and supplies
- Food Network Challenge, Food Network's show where bakers compete in cake decorating
- Flour Confections, sells cake decorating supplies and ingredients
- Wikipedia's article on cake decorating